Graphics hardware is an important component of a computer that enables it to run applications and play games. If your graphics card isn’t performing at its best, it can impact your computer’s performance and affect your experience as a user. Fortunately, there are several ways to check your graphics hardware and ensure that it’s working properly.
Whether you’re using Windows or another operating system, the first place to look for information about your graphics hardware is in the system’s settings. This allows you to check a number of parameters, including the resolution, refresh rate, bit depth and video driver version.
Microsoft’s DirectX Diagnostic Tool is a great way to see detailed graphics card information on Windows 10, 8, and 7 computers. It’s a tried and tested method that’s easy to use. You can open it by pressing Windows key + I and typing “dxdiag” into the Run dialog that appears.
If you’re running a Linux operating system on your machine, you can also check the GPU’s name and its video memory with the lspci command. This command provides detailed information about the peripheral devices connected through PCI (peripheral Component Interconnect) buses, including keyboard and mouse, sound, network and graphics cards.
If your system has a graphics card from a particular brand, it’s likely that the manufacturer has a control panel program for it. Some manufacturers offer this software in a web page button that’s clickable; others provide a download that you can install on your desktop.
The Windows version of the task manager can be an excellent way to check your GPU’s status and update its drivers if needed. It’s a simple process: press the Start menu or the desktop search bar and type Device Manager, then select it when the option appears.
In the list of devices, you’ll see an entry for Display adapters near the top; clicking it will give you a name and model for each graphics card. You can also double-click an icon to view device properties, inspect the details of your driver, and identify any driver updates available.
Device Manager can be particularly useful if you’ve recently upgraded your system, because it will automatically identify any new or changed devices and show you the latest driver versions. If you’re having problems with your graphics card, it’s likely that there’s an outdated or corrupt driver installed, which is why the process of updating it is so important.
In the same way, the free CPU-Z utility can be used to check the GPU’s current load and temperature. The program will also show you how much dedicated memory is being used and other statistics, as well as the GPU’s processor speed and clock frequency.
The graphics card’s driver is also often an issue when it stops functioning as expected, so be sure to download and install the latest driver for your GPU from the manufacturer’s website. This will not only help your computer function better, but it may even improve its performance overall.